US calls for release of Kremlin critic Navalny on 2nd anniversary of assassination attempt | Rest of the World News

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The US, on the second anniversary of the poisoning attack on opposition leader Alexey Navalny, has called Russian President Vladimir Putin to ensure his release


Image: AP

The United States, on the second anniversary of the poisoning attack on imprisoned opposition leader Alexey Navalny allegedly by the Kremlin, has called for his immediate release. In a statement released on Saturday, the US State Department accused officers of the Russian government of attempting to assassinate the opposition leader with a nerve agent on Russian soil. Hailing the courage of Navalny, the department recalled how he survived the brazen attack and bravely returned to Russia after recovering abroad. It termed Russia’s decision to imprison Navalny a “shameless” and “politically motivated” step. 

“We again condemn Russia’s use of a chemical weapon to poison a political opponent and call on the Kremlin to fully declare and dismantle its chemical weapons program. We also join Navalny’s family, colleagues, and supporters around the world in calling for his immediate release,” read the statement. 

Two years ago, Russian authorities attempted to assassinate opposition leader Aleksey @Navalny for speaking out against the Kremlin’s corruption and abuses. The U.S. condemns his politically motivated imprisonment and calls for his immediate release. https://t.co/9CIGj74ldz

— Ned Price (@StateDeptSpox) August 20, 2022

Further, the Biden administration alleged since launching its invasion of Ukraine, the Kremlin has escalated its crackdown on dissent and independent media in Russia, including through broad censorship laws carrying harsh prison sentences.  

According to the US State Department, the Kremlin sought to prevent the people of Russia from knowing about the atrocities its forces are inflicting on Ukrainian civilians.”We reaffirm our solidarity with Aleksey Navalny, Vladimir Kara-Murza, and other political prisoners in Russia, as well as the thousands of other courageous Russian citizens who, despite personal risk, confront the Kremlin’s lies with the truth,” added the statement. 

Who is Alexey Navalny?

Image: @navalny/Twitter

It should be mentioned here that the Opposition leader was allegedly poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok in August 2020. After returning to Russian soil in 2021, the government arrested Navalny and imprisoned him for two and half years. In March this year, he was sentenced to nine years in prison on charges of fraud and contempt of court. Since then, human rights organisations and other international communities have been demanding the release of Navalny. They blamed the Kremlin and President Putin behind the deadly attack — a charge that the Russian government repeatedly denied. Taking to the microblogging site, Navalny on Saturday, wrote he was celebrating his second birthday and added that “his case exposed both Putin himself and his system to such an extent that it has shown not only the criminality but also the dysfunctionality and failure of his regime.”

Image: AP

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